Preston Davies

Principal

P: +64 9 909 5810

E: pdavies@thinkSapere.com

Preston is a seasoned economist with particular interests in public policy, cost-benefit analysis, and applied microeconomics. Key sectors in which Preston applies economic thinking include transport, education, labour markets, and Maori economic development. He is particularly adept at simplifying complex and non-standard issues into forms that are amenable to detailed analysis in fields such as regulation, tax, and industry strategy. He is a member of the New Zealand Association of Economists and is on the editorial board of a journal of best practice in Maori and indigenous vocational education.

Preston holds a BCom (Hons) in Economics from the University of Auckland.

My publications

Sapere was enaged by Auckland Council to look at the economic costs and benefits of a proposed Container Deposit Scheme (CDS). ...

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Sapere Research Group was contracted by the Ministry of Health to determine the costs of the waterborne disease outbreak in Havelock North, the largest outbreak of its kind in New Zealand. The contamination was discovered on 12th August 2016 and the primary impacts lasted for approximately four weeks, though there was a relatively long ‘tail’ ...

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Sapere Research Group and Buddle Findlay were asked by the Department of Building & Housing to review the implications the current liability rule (as it relates to negligent acts) in the building and construction sector. Sapere’s role was to assess the economic arguments for alternative rules in terms of their effect on incentives, efficiency and ...

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This report estimates the value for the economy of using data to make decisions, as opposed to other methods of making decision, like relying on hunches. We estimate that New Zealand shared $2.4 billion of value by using data to make smarter decisions and to develop new products and services. There are opportunities to roughly ...

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This report looks at the value of Internet services for firms outside the ICT sector. It is well known that the overall economic impact of the use of ICT by firms, e.g., use of online ordering in retail, is much more significant than the impact of ICT production, e.g., growth in jobs in the tech ...

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Gary Blick, Preston Davies, Kieran Murray and Michael Ryan were commissioned to analyse the potential economic benefits of ultra-fast broadband to New Zealand. Our report utilised firm-level data from official surveys to assess the potential gains in labour productivity as a result of the faster speeds associated with a fibre connection. We then translated those ...

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Sapere was engaged by Chorus to estimate in monetary values the benefits to consumers from Ultra Fast Broadband (UFB). The intent is to establish a baseline and stimulate further interest in an area that is under-researched. It is a contribution to the discussion and debate, rather than the final word. This report complements earlier work ...

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The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) is reviewing New Zealand’s conformance system. The goal of the review is to ensure that the system is working well to support a strong economy, people’s well-being and Government priorities. This report by Sapere Research Group fulfils MBIE’s requirement to interview relevant stakeholders of the conformance system for ...

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Sapere was commissioned Faculty of Pain Medicine of the Australian and New Zealand College of Anaesthetists to investigate the cost of chronic pain to New Zealand. Our report finds that chronic pain costs more than diabetes or dementia yet there is no comprehensive plan to address it. Our research also finds that one in five ...

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Sapere was engaged by the Ministry of Business, Innovation & Employment to investigate global mega trends likely to affect the future of food and farming, and the implications for New Zealand’s science and innovation system. MBIE wanted to better understand the role of science and innovation in responding to potentially disruptive and transformative changes in ...

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Gary Blick & Preston Davies of Sapere were engaged by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Trade to contribute to a formative evaluation of Business Link Pacific (BLP), a development activity funded by MFAT with the goal of building the market for business advisory services in Pacific Island countries, thereby enabling small-to-medium enterprises to access ...